Agenda item



Report HPR2021/069


The report recommended that the Council confirmed 18 non-immediate Article 4 Directions to withdraw permitted development (PD) rights which allowed the demolition of purpose-built detached buildings used for offices (within former B1a office, B1b research and B1c light industrial uses) together with their replacement with a single detached block of flats or a single dwelling house. These Directions would apply to the three Business Improvement Areas (BIA) in Bromley Town Centre; Strategic Industrial Locations (SIL); the majority of Locally Significant Industrial Sites (LSIS); and all three Office Clusters, all as shown in the Bromley Local Plan (January 2019).

The areas selected for the Directions were key areas for the retention and promotion of offices, research and light industrial uses. The Article 4 Directions would accompany the existing Directions which removed Part 3, Class O office to residential PD rights within the Business Improvement Areas and three Office Clusters. It was considered expedient to restrict the operation of the new office to residential demolition PD right in the key areas outlined above due to the strategic importance of these designated areas. The Directions would thereby avoid harmful impacts upon economic development and ensure any development within the areas was properly planned in line with the policies in the adopted Local Plan.

In line with the requirements of legislation, representations on the proposed Directions were sought. The Council was required take into account any representations made before it confirmed the Article 4 Directions. One representation was received, which made general comments on the Direction covering the Franklin Industrial Estate LSIS, specifically noting numerous benefits of the existing concentration of businesses in the area and the need to protect these. If confirmed, the Directions would come into force on 11 May 2022.

Councillor William Huntington-Thresher questioned why the directions only related to the demolition of offices, as there is also a risk of existing offices converting to residential use with no demolition needed. The Head of Planning Policy and Strategy confirmed that the PD rights which allow demolition were separate to other PD rights which allow conversion, and that Article 4 Directions were already in place to remove these other PD rights in certain parts of the borough.

Councillor Alexa Michael urged the Committee to confirm the 18 non-immediate Article 4 Directions.  As a Borough Bromley needed to be seen to be taking its office and industrial spaces very seriously in order to benefit the local economy.  It was also suggested that this and the Article 4 Directions in Minute 88 should be widely publicised.


  1. The confirmation of 18 non-immediate Article 4 Directions to withdraw PD rights granted by the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015 (as amended) (“the GPDO”), Schedule 2, Part 20, Class ZA be endorsed. The areas covered by the Directions are shown on the map at Appendix 1.
  2. The matter be referred to the Renewal, Recreation and Housing Policy Development and Scrutiny Committee for pre-decision scrutiny.
  3. It be noted that the Portfolio Holder for Renewal, Recreation and Housing will be asked to confirm the 18 non-immediate Directions covering the areas shown on the map at Appendix 1, to come into force on 11 May 2022.



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